The credit, which covers up to 25% of a film’s budget, was announced on Monday. The program was expanded in 2015 to include movies with total budgets exceeding $75 million, including “A Wrinkle in Time,” “Bumblebee,” “Call of the Wild,” and Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.”
Fox’s action-drama “Ford v. Ferrari” from James Mangold is on track to spend more than $78 million in California on qualified expenditures (defined as wages to below-the-line workers and payments for equipment/vendors). A total of 67 shooting days are planned in-state, with well over half in regions outside the Los Angeles 30-mile zone, including Kern, Orange, Santa Rosa, and San Bernardino counties. California will double for locales such as Florida, Michigan, England, and France.
Paramount’s sequel “Coming 2 America,” starring Eddie Murphy, is on track to spend $64.6 million in-state on qualified expenditures.
“California’s expanded tax credit program was successful from day one in attracting TV projects and mid-range features, and it’s succeeding over the long term with big-budget film projects like those announced today,” said California Film Commission executive director Amy Lemisch. “While our tax credit is more modest than what’s offered by some competitors, filmmakers understand that California can still provide the best value thanks to our superior talent, infrastructure, weather, and locations.”
Seven other feature films — five from studios and two independents — were approved conditionally for the current $55.5 million round of tax credits. They include an untitled Jordan Peele film that will shoot extensively outside the 30-mile zone in Santa Cruz, the new “Scarface” remake, and “Deadwood” (based on the HBO series). A total of 39 pics applied for tax credits during the application period in March. Peele’s movie will receive $5.2 million in tax credits and the “Deadwood” film has been allocated $4.2 million.
The 2015-16 fiscal year marked a major expansion for the seven-year-old tax credit program, aimed at halting the erosion of California-based production to states with bigger incentives, such as Georgia and New York. The annual allocation rose from $100 million to $330 million, and applications are ranked on how many jobs they will produce, rather than being selected by lottery.
The commission said Monday that the nine conditionally-approved projects are on track to employ nearly 500 cast, 1,600 crew, and 30,000 extras. They will generate an estimated $288.6 million in overall qualified spending across the state.
“The opportunity to produce projects here in California not only creates jobs and economic activity in-state, but it allows us to use the incredible resources we have in our own backyard,” said Jeff LaPlante, president of physical production for Universal Pictures, the studio behind the untitled Peele film.